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'Body Worlds' exhibit returns to St. Paul

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Photo courtesy: Gunther von Hagens' BODY WORLDS, Institute for Plastination, Heidelberg, Germany,

A new version of the popular exhibit "Body Worlds" is coming back to the Science Museum of Minnesota in January, the Pioneer Press reports.

The exhibit has been in high demand since breaking attendance records at the museum in 2006.

"Body Worlds & The Cycle of Life" will display 20 full human cadavers, all different from the first exhibit, that have gone through the plastination process. Special sections within the exhibit include plasticized embryos and a fetus, preserved organs and the exploration of obesity.

The specimens come from a body donation program that was started by German anatomist Dr. Gunther von Hagens. The Star Tribune says human rights activists have attacked the exhibits in the past, describing them as "grotesque freak shows" that use bodies of the mentally ill or executed prisoners.

An attorney for the Science Museum checked death certificates in 2006 to confirm the bodies were voluntarily donated.

"Body Worlds" runs January 18 through May 5, 2013. Tickets for non-members of the Science Museum are $34 for adults and $26 for children and seniors. Members get tickets at $14 for adults and $9 for children and seniors.

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